MONDAY 14 DEC 2009 9:17 AM


Social media may be synonymous with openness, sharing and collaboration but it is also prone to its fair share of dirty tricks. Last week, the blogosphere was rallying in support of Jordan Stone, an account director at digital agency We Are Social, after he blogged about a somewhat underhand experience which, he says, “left a sour taste” in this mouth.

Stone recounts that he took a call from Angelos Taplatzidis, a junior account executive at Adobe, who was looking for a social media marketing agency to help Adobe UK increase its social media activity. Stone says he spent more than an hour detailing the clients We Are Social work with, the services they offer and their approach.

But after the call, and a little googling, Stone discovered that Taplatzidis no longer worked at Adobe. He had in fact joined a rival agency, Social Media Ltd, in a business development role. When challenged, he denied this. The story took on a life of its own when Twitter users began to discuss the ethics of the incident. Many wondered whether Social Media Ltd, and Adobe itself, would suffer reputational damage from the affair.

This weekend, Kostas Alekoglu, managing director of Social Media Ltd, said that the company “does not support or engage in the activities described. We value the professional and transparent relationship that social media companies share.”

He added that Taplatzidis had been employed on a trial basis and acted independently and without instruction. “As a consequence, he is no longer employed by us,” Alekoglu added.

Stone, for his part, is still perturbed by the incident. “What I have enjoyed the most about working in social media marketing and online PR is the openness between everyone in the industry,” he said. “Despite us all technically being competitors, we connect daily online, share advice and share useful news to improve ourselves. It astounds me that an individual would employ such a tactic. And the sweet irony that everything was so easily uncovered using social media.”

Adobe declined to comment.